Stocks quoted in this article:
Momentum names that made notable moves on Wednesday and could continue to do so into Thursday's session include insurance provider Travelers Companies Inc (NYSE:TRV), alternative energy concern Yingli Green Energy Hold. Co. Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE:YGE), and rail-based transportation provider CSX Corporation (NYSE:CSX). Here is a quick look at these stocks ahead of tomorrow's opening bell.
Travelers Companies Inc (NYSE:TRV)
Travelers has been on a quest for higher highs in recent sessions, and today, the stock reached a fresh record peak of $93.34, before finishing the session a tad north of breakeven, at $92.86. Stepping back, the equity has advanced 16.2% from its Feb. 4 year-to-date low of $79.89, so it's no wonder speculators at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) have bought to open more than 20 TRV calls for every put during the past two weeks. The resulting 10-day call/put volume ratio of 20.23 ranks the highest of all comparable readings taken during the past year, indicating the rate of bullish betting on TRV, relative to bearish, is faster now than it has been at any other time during the past 12 months. Likewise, Travelers' Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 0.26 ranks 1 percentage point from a 52-week low, meaning short-term call open interest (relative to put open interest) is nearing an annual-high level. Looking ahead, the company will host its annual shareholder meeting next Tuesday.
Yingli Green Energy Hold. Co. Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE:YGE)
While Yingli Green Energy has struggled on the charts for much of 2014, the stock was one of many alternative energy companies to shoot significantly higher today, thanks to an upbeat earnings report from sector component Trina Solar Limited (ADR) (NYSE:TSL). In fact, by the sound of the closing bell, the equity stood 10.2% above breakeven, at $3.14. In the options pits, call volume spiked to more than four times the average daily amount, with nearly two-thirds of the activity transpiring at the June 3.50 strike. It appears a significant number of contracts were bought to open at this strike, meaning speculators may be betting on a move north of $3.50 for YGE by front-month options expiration on Friday, June 20. It is also possible that short sellers were hedging against additional upside, as short interest currently accounts for 15.5% of the stock's available float. On the news front, YGE announced this morning it has begun trial production of Metal-Wrap-Through solar photovoltaic (PV) modules.
CSX Corporation (NYSE:CSX)
CSX finished the session 1.6% higher at $29.66, but not before hitting a new record peak of $29.72. Looking back to the start of the month, the equity has climbed more than 5%. Meanwhile, in the options pits today, CSX calls were scooped up at a rate that more than tripled the daily norm, and outnumbered puts by a roughly 10-to-1 margin. The majority of calls crossed through the August 30 strike, where it looks like speculators were betting on a trek to higher highs for CSX. Furthermore, today's preference for calls over puts is reflective of a longer-term trend in CSX's options pits. To be specific, the stock's 10-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX call/put volume ratio of 3.90 ranks in the 78th annual percentile, pointing to a faster-than-usual rate of call buying on CSX, relative to put buying, of late.